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Best Roller Coasters

The Top 10 Best Wooden and Steel Rides in North America

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Cyclone Roller coaster, Coney Island
Jessica Antola/The Image Bank/Getty Images
Why do we love roller coasters? They are almost a perversion of the pleasure-pain principle. We are drawn to them even as they incite fear, get our hearts racing, turn our knuckles white, and toss us around mercilessly. Then we get off and jump right back in line.

Beginning in the early 1990s, the rides began their second Golden Age (the first was during the Jazz-Age 1920s when the wooden lattices dotted the U.S. landscape) and their numbers and variety show no signs of letting up.

Why do we love roller coasters? Who knows? But, it seems, we can't get enough of them. If you can't get enough of them, then check out my picks for the very best thrill machines out there.

TOP 10 WOOD COASTERS IN NORTH AMERICA

Number 10: Cyclone
Cyclone Coaster Review

Coney Island in Brooklyn, NY

Sure, there may be "better" coasters. To say it's not the smoothest ride is an understatement. (One fan I know likened the first drop to riding down the rungs of an 85-foot ladder.) But this classic is one of the originals and holds a special place in the hearts of fans. The Cyclone is nostalgic, yet surprisingly vital, after all these years.

The Top 10 Wood Coasters List continues with numbers 1 to 9.

TOP 10 STEEL COASTERS IN NORTH AMERICA

Number 10: Ride of Steel
Ride of Steel Coaster Review

Darien Lake in Darien Center, NY (between Buffalo and Rochester)

(Note that when Six Flags operated the park, this ride was known as Superman: Ride of Steel. It's similar, but not identical to Bizarro--previously also known as Superman: Ride of Steel--at Six Flags New England as well as Superman: Ride of Steel at Six Flags America.)

Known as a "hypercoaster" for breaking the 200-foot height level, Ride of Steel delivers the goods in speed, acceleration, and airtime.

The Top 10 Steel Coasters List continues with numbers 1 to 9.

Related Video
Wood vs. Steel Coasters
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